Korea’s factory activity expands for 7th straight month — PMI

04-May-2021 Intellasia | Reuters | 5:02 AM Print This Post

South Korea’s factory activity expanded for a seventh straight month in April, a private sector survey showed on Monday, as output and global demand continued to improve, highlighting a sustained turnaround in the economy’s manufacturing sector.

The IHS Markit purchasing managers’ index (PMI) for April stood at 54.6, compared with a 55.3 in March. The index has held above the 50-mark threshold, which indicates an expansion in activity, since October.

“South Korean firms recorded further increases in both output and new orders in the latest survey period, as businesses reported improved demand, particularly in the technology sector,” said Usamah Bhatti, economist at IHS Markit.

“External demand also rose at a solid pace in April, driven by recoveries in Asia and North America.”

The sub-index for output stood at 55.3, marking the eighth straight month of growth, though lower than 56.8 a month earlier.

Total new orders expanded for a seventh month, while those from external clients continued to grow after posting the sharpest increase in four months in March.

To meet greater output, firms increased employment for a second month after marking the sharpest growth in near eight years a month earlier.

Looking ahead, businesses were strongly optimistic over the coming 12 months, with the gauge of future output index rising to 64.0 from 61.4 in March.

“Firms were hopeful that a wider economic recovery would drive demand for newly launched products in both domestic and external markets,” Bhatti said.

“IHS Markit currently estimates industrial production will expand by 5.5 percent in 2021.” (Reporting by Joori Roh; Editing by Sam Holmes)



Category: Korea

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